Racial fear emerges -- War abroad, suspicion at home -- FDR's decision to intern -- Implementing an undemocratic policy -- Covering a retreat -- Equal justice delayed -- President of all the people?
Includes bibliographical references (p. -310) and index
On February 19, 1942, following the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor and Japanese successes in the Pacific, President Franklin Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which allowed for the summary removal of Japanese aliens and American citizens of Japanese descent from their West Coast homes, and their incarceration under guard in camps. Amid the numerous histories of this shameful event, FDR's contributions have been seen as negligible. Now, using Roosevelt's own writings and other documents, historian Robinson reveals the president's central role in the internment and examines not only what the president did but why. This book attempts to explain how a great humanitarian leader, while fighting a war to preserve democracy, could have implemented such a profoundly unjust and undemocratic policy toward his own people. It reminds us of the power of a president's beliefs on public policy and of the need for citizen vigilance to protect against potential abuses.--From publisher description